Akai Pro Announces Standalone MPC Live

2017 NAMM Show: Akai Professional today announced a new addition to its iconic MPC line, the MPC Live.

While the new MPC X is designed to be a flagship MPC, the MPC Live expands on the production workflow of the more compact MPC Touch by adding standalone functionality.

At the heart of the new MPC Live is a full-color 7-inch multi-touch screen, 16 velocity- and pressure-sensitive RGB pads, and a large, clickable master encoder knob. The MPC Live is designed to be both portable and powerful, packing 2GB of RAM and 16GB of on-board storage, but weighing in at just 5.5 lbs. It can even run battery-powered, via the internal, rechargeable lithium-ion battery.

Powering MPC Live is MPC 2.0, Akai Professional’s new version of the MPC software. Capable of running natively on MPC Live in standalone mode, MPC 2.0 can also be run from a Mac or PC, with the MPC Live connected to a computer.

Among the new features added to 2.0 are: audio track recording, an improved time warp algorithm, enhanced Q-Link control, drag and drop audio/MIDI – all appearing on a new graphical interface.

Here’s the official intro video:

Features:

  • Works standalone or as a control surface for MPC 2.0 software
  • Internal, rechargeable lithium-ion battery
  • Turntable (RCA) inputs with ground peg
  • 16GB of on-board storage (over 10GB of sound content included)
  • User-expandable 2.5” SATA drive connector (SSD or HDD)
  • 2 pairs of full-size MIDI inputs and outputs
  • 2GB of RAM for sampling
  • SD Card slot
  • 2 USB-A 3.0 slots for thumb drives or MIDI controllers

“The MPC Live is an absolute beast. It truly represents a huge step forward in the product category,” said Dan Gill, Product Manager for Akai Professional. “MPC Live is the most powerful MPC we’ve made to date and yet it’s portable enough to take anywhere.

Here are a few beatmaking demos with the MPC Live:

In this ‘Standalone Challenge’ video, above, Grammy-award winning Trap producer Zaytoven (Gucci Mane, Migos, Drake, Future) creates a track from scratch using only the MPC Live and an MPK249 plugged directly into the Live. No computers were used.

Akai Pro also shared a few videos, demoing features of the MPC Live:

Pricing and Availability

The MPC Live is expected to be available in Q1 2017, price at US $1,199.

inMusic will be showing Akai’s new MPC 2.0 series, including MPC Live, later this month at the 2017 NAMM Show.

Korg Gadget 3.0 Now Available For iOS, Mac OS X

Korg Gadget 3.0 – the latest version of the virtual music studio – is now available for iOS. And as of version 3, Gadget is also available for Mac OS X.

Gadget offers a collection of more than 20 virtual instruments, or “Gadgets”, that you can use as a virtual studio.  The latest version features universal support not only for the iPad, but also for the iPad Pro and the iPhone.

Korg Gadget for Mac introduces new workflow options.

You can now use the Mac version at home and the iOS version when you are mobile, with what Korg calls ‘a seamless workflow’. The Mac version also comes with the “Gadget Plug-In Collection,” plug-in versions of the Gadgets in AU, VST, AAX, and NKS formats.

Here’s an intro to Gadget for Mac from the 2017 NAMM Show:

Here’s what’s new in Gadget 3.0:

  • Two new gadgets provide long-awaited audio recording.
  • “Recife” – A new powerful drum gadget with 16 pads.
  • Supports music sharing service “Allihoopa”. http://allihoopa.com/
  • Supports exporting plug-in data with Ableton Live Export.
  • Supports audio document manager “AudioShare”.
  • Other improvements have been made to enhance stability.

Here’s the official Gadget For Mac intro video:

Audio Demos:

Pricing and Availability

Korg Gadget 3 is available now for iOS for US $19.99 (normally $39.99) and for Mac OS X for $199 (normally $299).

Note: On iOS, many Gadgets are in-app purchases, while on OS X, they are included in the application price.

Behringer Moving Forward With Minimoog Model D Clone

 

Behringer head Uli Behringer expects to have a prototype of their Minimoog Model D clonebuilt by next week and hopes to bring it to Superbooth 2017.

In a forum post, Behringer shared this photo of their PCB, noting:

We have just received the first PCB (Print Circuit Board) and if all goes well, we should have a working prototype ready by next week.

As you can see it is quite a dense layout as squeezing a complete Model D design into a Eurorack format is not an easy task.

Please keep in mind that we are still many months away from a shipment date. A typical design cycle requires around 1-2 board spins, all depending on the audio performance as well as the subsequent compliance testing which includes EMC and safety.

Since people have shown interest, we will happily share with you the design milestones of this synthesizer, so you get a better understanding how an electronic product is engineered.

Behringer recently announced their plans to make a $400 Minimoog Model D clone, below:

The synth is designed to be used as a standalone synth or as part of a Eurorack system, with limited patchability.

 

 

Nonlinear Labs C15 Synthesizer Now Available To Pre-Order

 

Nonlinear Labs has announced that the C15 – a new high-end keyboard synthesizer – is now available to pre-order.

Nonlinear Labs is a new company, founded by Native Instruments founder Stephan Schmitt. The company was founded with the goal of making advanced electronic instruments for performing musicians, focusing on playability, expressiveness, quality, and durability.

The C15 is a polyphonic instrument with a digital sound synthesis architecture. The goal of the audio engine is not to model analog machines of the past or to play back samples or complex waveforms, but to focus on creating sounds that can be dramatically influenced by how you play.

The signal processing structure has been condensed down to an essential, yet powerful arrangement of carefully chosen components. The only signal sources are two sine wave oscillators. They are connected to each other and to a feedback bus for phase modulation and their signals are processed by two wave-shapers, a comb filter, a multi-mode filter, and a chain of five stereo effects.

The signals are generated in real-time by digital algorithms. The core components are two sine wave oscillators feeding a structure with phase modulation (often referred to as FM), waveshapers, a delay-based resonator, a multi-mode filter, and a chain of five effects. Feedback signal paths also play an important role in the sound character and responsiveness. Together, these elements generate organic and complex sounds with a natural instrument behavior.

The C15’s human interface has been designed for two purposes: playing and sound design. The instrument features a Fatar keybed with semi-weighted long-arm keys. There is a specially-designed ergonomic pitch bender, two very long touch strips (ribbons), and connections for up to four pedals.

The instrument itself is made primarily from wood, steel and aluminum.

Every parameter can be directly selected by a button. The C15’s functions are software-defined, but have a dedicated haptic control surface. In addition, a graphical user interface can be displayed and edited on any device that has a browser and Wi-Fi. The interface is optimized for touch screens and can be intuitively zoomed and panned with common gestures.

See the Nonlinear Labs site for a large collection of video and audio demos.

Phase 22 Synthesis Engine:

  • 2 Oscillators (sine wave, phase modulation, frequency randomization)
  • 2 Shapers (sine curve, adjustable foldback and asymmetry
  • Ring Modulator
  • Comb Filter (tunable, with allpass and lowpass)
  • State Variable Filter (multi-mode, 2-4 poles, FM)
  • Feedback Mixer (4 input signals, shaper for the sum)
  • Feedback bus with 4 destinations
  • Output Mixer (stereo, 4 input signals, shaper for the sum)
  • 5 Stereo Effects: Cabinet (amp simulation), 8-pole Gap/Band Filter, Phaser/Flanger/Chorus, Echo, Reverb
  • 3 ADBDSR Envelopes, adjustable attack curve
  • Velocity sensitivities for envelope levels, attack times, and release times
  • 4 Macro Controls, assignable to up to 86 target parameters
  • 8 Hardware Sources, mappable to the 4 Macro Controls
  • Number of parameters: 317
  • Resolution of the parameters: typically 1000 steps (250 … 15000 steps)
  • Resolution of key velocity, ribbons, bender, aftertouch, pedals: 4000 steps
  • 12-voice polyphony, variable Unison settings
  • Scale parameters for micro-tuning the 12 steps of the octave

Play Interface:

  • 61-key (5 octave) Fatar keybed with semi-weighted long-arm keys
  • Note-on and note-off velocity sensitivity
  • Monophonic aftertouch
  • Two 800 mm touch strips (ribbons), each with 33 LED dots
  • Ribbon modes: absolute, relative, combinable with return-to-center
  • Lever (magnetic force loaded) for pitchbending and similar applications
  • Control panel with an OLED display (128 x 32 dots) and four buttons
  • Output volume potentiometer (at the front)
  • Headphone level potentiometer (at the front)

Parameter Editing:

  • 4 Selection panels, each with 24 buttons and LEDs
  • Labeling by exchangeable magnetic overlays
  • Edit panel with an OLED display (256 x 64 dots), an incremental encoder, and 18 buttons
  • The ribbons are also assignable for parameter editing.
  • User-definable Init preset and Default values
  • Randomize function
  • Graphical user interface on any WiFi-enabled device running a browser, unique zoom-and-pan navigation, enabled for touch

Preset System:

  • User-definable banks
  • Unlimited number of presets per bank
  • User-editable infos per preset
  • Search function to find presets by name or tags in the infos
  • Morphing transition between presets.

Undo System:

  • Unlimited undo for all user interactions, including sound editing steps
  • Undo list with support for different editing branches (tree view)

Connectors:

  • Main audio outputs (L, R) (TRS, balanced by transformers)
  • Headphone output at the front (TRS)
  • 4 inputs for analog controls, such as pedals (TRS, flexible pin-assignment)
  • USB host connector for data exchange and software updates

Dimensions:

  • Base unit only: 900 x 290 x 100 mm (width x depth x height)
  • Including panel unit: 900 x 410 x 160 mm (width x depth x height)

Pricing and Availability

The Nonlinear Labs C15 is available to pre-order now for 4000 € (includes 19% German VAT), with availability in May 2017.